Heather Keaney


Associate Professor of History
Phone: (805) 565-7148
Email: hkeaney@westmont.edu
Office Location: Deane Hall 214

Office Hours
Leading the WESTMONT IN ISTANBUL program Spring 2014

Modern Middle East

PROFESSOR HEATHER KEANEY is an alum of Westmont who has spent the past eleven years living and teaching in Cairo at the American University in Cairo and at the CCCU’s Middle East Studies Program (MESP).   As the acting-director of MESP in Fall 2009 she led 30 students through Turkey, Syria and Israel-Palestine and just returned from leading the Westmont Istanbul Spring 2012 Semester.  Professor Keaney is enthusiastic about helping students place the events that make headlines in the Middle East within their historical and cultural context in order to reveal their human dimension.  She hopes students will come to share some of her love and passion for the place and its people.  



Doctor of Philosophy (PH.D.): Middle East History

            University of California, Santa Barbara                                                                         2003

Master of Arts (M.A.): European History and Middle East History

            University of California, Santa Barbara                                                                         1995

Bachelor of Arts Degree (B.A.): History, magna cum laude, Philosophy (minor)

            Westmont College, Santa Barbara, California                                                                1993


“Confronting the Caliph: ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan in three ‘Abbasid Chronicles,” Studia Islamica (1: 2011), pp 37-65.

“Taha Husayn, Tabari and the Future of History in Egypt,” in James E. Lindsay and

Jon Armajani, eds., Historical Dimensions of Islam: Essays in Honor of R. Stephen Humphreys.  Princeton: Darwin Press, 2009.

“Caliph,” “Caliphate,” “Copts,” “Crusades,” “Islam and Politics,” “Islamic

Government,” “Mamluk,” “Sultan,” “Saladin” and “Vizier” in Juan E. Campo, ed., Encyclopedia of Islam volume of  Encyclopedia of World Religions. New York: Facts on File, Inc., 2009.*

“The First Islamic Revolt in Mamluk Collective Memory: Ibn Bakr’s (d. 1340)

                  Portrayal of the Third Caliph ‘Uthman” in Sebastian Guenther ed., Ideas, Images, and Methods of Portrayal: Insights into Classical Arabic Literature and Islam.  Leiden: Brill, 2005.

Book Review of Salwa Ismail, Rethinking Islamist Politics: Culture, the State and

      Islamism in International Journal of Middle East Studies, 37 (2005).

* This Encyclopedia of Islam recently received the “Best of Reference” award from the New York Public Library.